Last edited 24 May 2023

Designated areas

Aonb-g6203ba1a2 1280.jpg


[edit] Introduction

Designation can be used to protect areas of value and scientific interest and to ensure that such areas are properly managed. This includes areas of particular value for the conservation of species, habitats, historic and cultural assets and landscapes of great value or beauty.

Designation is driven by a goal to conserve and enhance such areas and is underpinned by UK and international legislation. Development within or near designated areas is subject to additional controls.

There are two types of designation in the UK, Statutory Designation and Non-Statutory Designation.

Approximately 28% of England is designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty or National Parks.

[edit] Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)

SSSIs were first established in 1949 by the Nature Conservancy so the conservation of important sites of natural habitat, wildlife and geological heritage could be taken into account during the planning process. Today, Natural England has responsibility for identifying and protecting SSSIs in England under the provisions of the Wildlife and Countryside Act.

SSSIs include sites such as:

For more information see: Sites of Special Scientific Interest

[edit] Special Areas of Conservation (SAC)

SACs are areas designated under the European Union’s Habitats Directive to be of value for species, plants and habitats. They comprise marine and terrestrial SACs.

For more information see: Special Areas of Conservation

[edit] Special Protection Areas (SPA)

SPAs are designated under the Birds Directive to protect internationally valuable populations of bird species. They comprise inshore marine SPAs and terrestrial SPAs.

For more information see: Special Protection Areas

[edit] National parks

National parks are areas of the countryside designated to conserve and enhance their natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage and the open air recreation they facilitate.

For more information see: National parks

[edit] Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)

ANOBs are designated to conserve natural beauty in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For more information see: Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty

[edit] National Scenic Area NSA

In Scotland, a National Scenic Area (NSA) is an area of countryside with high scenic value of national importance and interest that has statutory protection to conserve and enhance the natural beauty of its landscape.

National Scenic Areas (NSAs) include:

For more information see: National Scenic Area

[edit] National Nature Reserves (NNR)

NNRs are areas managed in England by Natural England for the preservation of flora, fauna, geological and physiological features of special interest.

For more information see: National Nature Reserves

[edit] Ramsar Sites

Ramsar sites are wetlands of international importance designated under the Ramsar Convention.

For more information see: Ramsar sites

[edit] Marine protected areas

Marine protected areas include Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) for habitats of European importance, Special Protection Areas (SPAs) for birds, Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs) and Marine Nature Reserves designated to conserve marine flora and fauna and features of special interest.

[edit] National Trails

National trails are long-distance trails through National Parks or Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

For more information see: National Trails

[edit] Heritage Coasts

Heritage coasts are areas of coastline managed to conserve and enhance their natural beauty, facilitate appreciation by the public, and maintain and improve their environmental health. They are defined areas rather than designated and so establishing them does not require the statutory designation process, they are protected by planning through development control.

For more information see: Heritage coast

[edit] World Heritage Sites

World heritage sites are sites with internationally important cultural or national heritage.

For more information see: World Heritage Sites

[edit] Local Nature Reserves (LNR)

LNRs are areas of special local wildlife or geological interest.

[edit] Local sites

Local sites are designated by Local Planning Authorities. They include Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINCS), Sites of Nature Conservation Importance (SNCIs) and County Wildlife Sites.

Other local sites where restrictions might apply include registered common land and registered town or village greens. In addition, conservation areas, tree preservation orders and listed buildings require additional consent for development.

[edit] Global Geoparks

Global Geoparks are part of the Global Geopark Network supported by UNESCO.

[edit] Biosphere reserves

Biosphere reserves are designated under UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Programme.

[edit] Related articles on Designing Buildings

[edit] External references

Designing Buildings Anywhere

Get the Firefox add-on to access 20,000 definitions direct from any website

Find out more Accept cookies and
don't show me this again